Advent Cushion

My latest make which is in demand is this Advent cushion. A novel idea with a lovely Christmas decoration which I found on my trip to new York last year!


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A Wallhanging for Christmas

On a visit to New Zealand in January this year I picked up a lovely pattern for a Christmas tree wallhanging and in time for the festive season I have made it!


The swirls are made with scraps of black print cotton fabrics and the circles and star are made from a corron print that I bought in New Zealand. It is stitched on to a linen background and embellished with tiny diamante before stretching on to an artists canvas.

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Christmas is Coming………

After muttering to myself that it was far too early to be having selection boxes and decorations in the shops I find myself planning a design for this years Christmas cards to send to friends! And below is one design that I have created.


First step was to dye the fabric which I then overprinted with a rollergraph. I then added foil and chose an embroidery stitch from my sewing machine to add a little texture. To finish off I added a wooden Christmas tree which was cut from a roll of Christmas string.

I have been experimenting with pipe cleaners to make these ones -a bit fiddly but they do look quite effective when completed. I have made a stamp with string to see what printed ones will look like?


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Transfer Art Paints and Kunin Felt

Continuing with the experimentation I took some white kunin felt and coloured it with transfer art paints to create decaying autumnal leaves.


The orange/yellow one on the left has been created by randomly painting computer paper with transfer art paints. The colours are then heat transferred to kunin felt and shaped by a soldering iron to give the desired effect.

The second leaf on the right has been created by layering vilene, polyester satin, tyvek and organza. I have zapped it with the soldering iron to make the leaf shape and then further coloured it with fabric crayons.

More experimentation to follow soon………

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Experimenting with Fabric Paints

Inspired by the indigo bath experimentation and as the sun was shining I decided to play around with dyeing some fabrics in the garden.

Paint in garden (1)

I used the polystyrene balls again to see what effect I could achieve with fabric paints. I painted this sample red as I have an idea for making Christmas cards similar to the abstract fabric ones I made last year

Paint in garden (3)

I then used bull dog clips to concertina the fabric which was then painted green and left in the sun. The colour isn’t strong but it has given and interesting stripe design to the fabric.

concertina fabric

I painted a piece of fabric orange, scrunched it up in the tray and left it to dry – close to another piece of fabric – hence the tinge of green!

scrunch fabric

I plan to use the orange and green colours on an autumnal theme that I have in mind.

And finally, I used bubble wrap over painted fabric, which wasn’t as effective as previously so I will be overdyeing that piece of fabric!

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Indigo Dyeing

Today I visited a friend to spend the day experimenting with indigo dye and what a lovely day it was too! Having gathered an array of fabrics, string, bulldog clips, elastic bands, thread, polystyrene balls etc we set to work with some interesting results.

We experimented by trapping the polystyrene balls in the fabric with elastic bands which gave these amazing results

MD shibori2 web

shibori ID web

Then we used a piece of fabric printed with dragonflies. Here we put a piece of cling film over the dragon fly and then trapped the polystyrene ball underneath with an elastic band.

dragon fly web

Next we took a piece of fabric, folded it and sewed it down before dipping it into the indigo, This produced a great effect.

ID linesweb

And finally, we overdyed some fabric that I didn’t particularly like – with some very pleasing results!

MD coloured and printed web

Now I just need to decide what to do with all these lovely samples!!!!

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New Additions to the Conservatory

Having painted the conservatory for the summer I have been busy making new cushion covers to match. The pattern for this one was in a Stitch embroidery magazine and gave the opportunity to practice my free machine embroidery. I have used scraps of silk, leather and linen to make the pebble shapes.

gold circle cushion

And this one I made from a scrap bag that I bought from Sew Lovely fabric shop in Penarth

gold patchwork cushions

Lots of scraps left so I need to have a think about what to use them for!

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Roald Dahl’s Centenary

This year is Roald Dahl’s centenary and to mark the occasion the Telegraph newspaper were giving away bags at the Hay Festival that had an image of the BFG on it.

So, I decided that to get the best use out of my bag I would make it into a cushion. And here it is……

roald dahlweb

Just need to find a good home for it now!

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More Postcards!

Today I went to a Cutting Edge workshop to make postcards – yes more!!!

I decided on the one design of the one below after rummaging through photographs and it gave me the opportunity to practice my free machine embroidery.

The background fabric has been printed on the computer. I have then cut out the window and shutters from fabric scraps and appliqued them on to the fabric. I have put lace behind to give the impression of lace curtains. I have used dyed scrim for the bottom of the window to give the impression of lots of foliage and then free machine embroidered flowers over the top. I have made the wisteria by couching thread and free machine embroidering stems and leaves. I have used variagated thread to make the wisteria flowers.

MD window web

I then went on to make a second postcard using an image of a hare printed on fabric with scraps of silk fabric to make a crazy paving design. I finished the card off with a little cotton lace and fussy cuts from lace fabric.

hare postcardweb

My third postacrd is work in progress……..

deckchairs web

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Work in Progress

I have been on a bit of a mission sewing recently.

After buying a quilting magazine – which is quite unusual for me – I was inspired to empty the box of selvedge edges that I have acculumultaed over the years to make a quilt. And… I am quite pleased with the result so far. I am using the Karin Helaby exploding pineapple design to make the blocks.

woor in progress

Keeping to the scrap theme I have used fabric scraps from my overflowing bin and rummaged through my fabric stash to coordinate suitable fabrics and hopefully will be able to continue along these lines to complete the whole quilt. What a challenge this will be as there is always the temptation to buy some new fabrics just in case!

I have also been making little pictures from scraps of cream and white fabrics – which you can see in the background photograph above. I have layered up the fabrics then hand sewn over them to trap all the fabric in place.

Having bought lots of fat quarters in New Zealand because they were so lovely I have been inspired to make another quilt – which is also work in progress. Making the quilt blocks isn’t a problem but once that process is fimished I am useless at basting the quilt together ready for sewing. Fortunately, some very good friends helped be at a recent Cutting Edge meeting and I am now in the process of quilting.

Corinne and Keris

Corinne and Keris

Many thanks to Corinne, Keris and Liz for their help.

Hopefully I will be posting the finshed quilts soon!

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